Cancer…

Well guys a lot of time has flown by. I’ve been finding my new normal with cancer. Sometimes I think I have a grip on it all and then it just kinda unravels, whether it’s physically, spiritually or emotionally. I’m realizing more and more that I really don’t have a grip on too much. I’m thinking that’s a good thing…I always hung on much too tightly to things before. It’s as if the past two years, God has been trying to pry my fingers loose from this death grip of perfectionism and being overly concerned with things that don’t really matter in the end.

Sooooo, I got to attend a conference on Thyroid cancer this past weekend and it stunned me a bit. It was interesting to see that I’m not alone in the unraveling I mentioned before. It’s pretty common in folks living with this cancer. Still, there are many things about my health I belittle, and part of what I need to learn is to take things a little more seriously. No fretting necessary, but I can’t walk around in an oblivious denial either. Anyhow, lots to learn, and there’s much room for growth! ๐Ÿ™‚

I’m hoping to finish up “Let It Go”, the project I’m producing with Jan Krist and Alan Finkbeiner this next month. Getting some of the kinks worked out and I’ve been comparing manufacturing options. Super cool!

So this day is a gift, give it all you got!
-a

Update on New Project

Hey guys,
Well things have been moving on this end. I’m up for an ultrasound in a couple of weeks to see what’s going on in my neck. I had a few questionable things floating around in there at my last checkup. It’s funny though, the med staff actually needs some time to see if these little cells start growing. Even if they see something, if they’re unsure, they gotta wait. No fun for me ๐Ÿ™

I’ve gotten pretty sluggish over the past couple months. A sore throat I can’t kick and some kind of bug or something..not so great. It really takes a toll on me physically.

But, in the midst of all that uncomfortable stuff, the Lord opened up a miraculous door for me.

I think I shared with you guys a bit back that Jan Krist has become my mentor and a dear friend over these past couple years. She was one of my heroes back in the day. I’m sure she’d cringe if she heard that..Anyway, I’ve finally grown up a bit and singing and songwriting are a gracious gift from God to be used for His glory, not mine. I’m responsible to develop these gifts and serve Him, and serve the work He’s put before me.

So I had this little cluster of songs that began as tools for womens’ ministries. We see a lot of broken women here at our shelter, Cornerstone Community Outreach. You can read more about them here: http://www.ccolife.org/

Abuse, addictions and despair are common stories with these ladies. So many of us can relate to addictions and bad relationships, whether or not we’ve ever set foot in a shelter though. So hopefully these songs can get people thinking and hoping for more than the things that we settle for so much of the time.

Anyhoo, she’s offered to help me record this cluster of songs. We had our first session a couple of weeks ago. I was able to do put down 6 guitar tracks and five vox! Yahoo! Though I’d planned on just getting an ep together, it looks like we’re gonna go for a full length project!!! ๐Ÿ™‚ amazing…

A few years back a dear friend was trying to encourage me and he said, “You know, sometimes we face some pretty difficult things, but sometimes, God also gives us “a little sugar to help the medicine go down” ๐Ÿ˜‰ It’s stuck with me for all these years, and it’s really resonating deep in my soul right now. God is merciful.

Have a great weekend. My honey and my son are gone for a guys weekend, so I’m having a retreat here at home. Lots of prayer and seeking God about a few things.

peace to you,
-Aracely

A Gig! :-)

Hey guys…I’m playing my first gig since my surgery back in November…I’m just floored. I’ve had some incredible time with the Lord this past bit. A lot of soul searching and listening. He knows exactly what we need, when we need it! ๐Ÿ™‚ I wish I would’ve kept you guys more aware of all that was going on, but God knows, maybe I’ll get a chance to share with you in person. ๐Ÿ˜‰

I’ll be opening up for Glenn at the Tapestry Fellowship on Irving Park this next Friday…doors open at 7:30 with a $5 donation…I’ll play for a bit, then Glenn will play and share from his new release, “Cardboard Box” Hope you can be there..

Songs from the Deep: An Urban Blues Narrative
Tapestry
3824 W. Irving Park
Chicago, IL
Friday, June 17 ยท 7:30pm – 10:00pm

hmmm…

I’ve been off this for a bit while I’ve been squirming, but God is an amazingly loving Father. I can count three times when fear has just gotten so big in me that I can’t see. He faithfully sends someone around, either physically or even by phone, to remind me not to be afraid and that He has me…really, in every sense of the word. That just floors me.

I thank you for all your prayers and am looking forward to getting some more info from my doc tomorrow. A friend of mine encouraged me that my days were already numbered before one of them came to be. The challenge is to just rest in the One who loves more deeply than anyone I can ever encounter here.

Funny, that’s something I know in my head, but the movement from the head to the heart can be startling.

Anyhow, guys…really looking forward to heading out to share of His faithfulness once I know some more about my health. I’m putting a couple of dates together as we speak. I’ll post them as soon as things come together…

peace and strength to you,
-Aracely

Oswald Chambers

Hey guys…I was reading in “My Utmost For His Highest” a couple of days ago and was struck by the reading, “The Way To Permanent Faith”ย  It’s a pretty meaty reading, but a quick paraphrase is that God allows dark times in our lives through His sovereignty so that we can know His care through the good and bad.ย  Until we go through the dark times, our faith is based on feelings and blessings.

It’s funny, I didn’t so much think of this disease I’m walking through, but about this depression I’m grappling with. I’ve been so puzzled by it. This reading really ministered to my soul.

I was up really early that morning and prayed for our house; the outreaches, our businesses, our families. It wasn’t about me, it was about the people around me.ย  It wasn’t the first time, but I don’t do it as much as I wish I did.

Oswald Chambers went onto to say that “Until Jesus Christ is truly our Lord, we each have goals of our own which we serve. Our faith is real, but it’s not yet permanent.” Wow…I wondered about my recent struggles with not being able to lead worship here in my home church. I’m part of a team, but my voice is limited and I can’t lead a congregation right now.ย ย  Maybe I can’t do it, or maybe I’m too scared to try at this point.ย  Either way, the thought about serving my own goals, rather than the heart of God pierces my soul.ย  Is it possible to have too much of our identity hidden in the things we do, rather than who we are in Christ?ย  You better believe it…

So maybe this season, is not just about listening for Him, but about allowing Him full reign in my heart and my life, however that may look.

Once more, I stand corrected and wait to hear from the One who does all things well.

peace and strength to you this day,

-Aracely